Ahhh, late summer. For most kids, these are the last halcyon days of summer break. For entrepreneurs, it is the midpoint of the fiscal year. You are matching your business projections to what your actual profits are, paying quarterlies in the U.S., considering hiring, firing, looking for new clients, and maybe, just maybe, you find yourself a little worn out. Whether you started your business because it was a driving passion, or it truly grew out of a need to have a more flexible schedule, being an entrepreneur at ANY level, is often an isolating experience.
Even if you have great success, with more money than that old 9-5 job, (Ok, who are we kidding? No one has worked a 9-5 schedule since pagers were mass distributed in the 90’s), there is still an inordinate amount of pressure to have the answers, to figure it out, and to keep succeeding. We can’t help you with that responsibility, but we put together a few things you can do to stress less as you head into Fall.
- Know Your Numbers-Sounds simple, but some of the most creative people in the world can build businesses because their ideas and starting powers are insanely good, but that same creative force is often missing the order and structure that a number cruncher has, leading to financial chaos. You should know at this point in the year your profit and losses, what expenditures you have made and what the ROI has been or is projected to be on those expenditures. If this sounds like a chore, delegate this task. Blissful ignorance is not the key to long-term success, which brings us to our second suggestion:
- Know Your Genius-Small business leaders especially have to ruthlessly prioritize their days into focusing 80 percent of their time on revenue-generating activities. Know your genius, the tools and skills you bring to the business that make it unique and powerful. Find ways to do ONLY those things and hire out the rest. Yes, we realize money is not unlimited, but there are so many automated, easy tools out there, (Semble being one) and this is the gig economy. You will be able to find people or services in your price range that may cost money upfront, but will free you up from payroll issues, managing people, dabbling in graphic design, or guessing at social media tactics, so you can focus on doing what secures more customers or clients.
- Know Silence-For 10 minutes a day, force yourself to just be. And by that, we mean, turn off the cell phone, step away from the computer, make your environment silent, and allow idleness. You don’t need to be into yoga or meditation, but the act of silence and quiet, without making a to-do list in your head accomplishes two things. First, it relaxes and refreshes you. Second, making that quiet time allows new ideas to form, new solutions to appear that couldn’t break through our constant typing, phone calls, texts and social media distractions. Read more about the benefits of solitude and noise pollution here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/silence-brain-benefits_us_56d83967e4b0000de4037004
- Know Fun-You work hard. Give yourself permission to play hard, even if just for an afternoon. Try something you never have, go on a spur of the moment overnight, buy a new game and play it with friends or family with all the competitive spirit of a 13-year-old.
- Know Mentors-If you run a business, you either hold all your concerns inside, to look strong for the staff, or if you tend to process your thinking and emotions verbally, you might tend to overburden your employees or decrease their confidence in your strength as a leader by telling them too much. Find mentors or peers in your field or your local area and schedule regular coffees to meet with similar people. Sample groups that might be a fit include TAB, or Vistage, or get a retired expert to help you from SCORE.
Got more tips for rejuvenating? We’d love to hear from you! And if we can help you with Semble or getting started on making an app, give us a shout.